Week In Review - Top 10 ActiveRain FAQ's

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy

These are the top most Frequently Asked Questions I received and tried to answer this week.  I thought it might be a good idea to put these out there in hopes that this will help others who might have the same issues, or questions.  Sometimes just helping one person creates an opportunity to help many.

  I'm just getting started on ActiveRain. I attended a class a few weeks ago. I finally got up the courage to write my first blog, it's not great, but you have to start somewhere. I know my confidence will grow with practice and my blogs will improve.  Here's my question, when entering the blog, I only have 3 options for visibility- members only, draft, associates only. How do I make it available to the public?

  Congrats on your first post, I remember getting up the courage to write my first post.  The free basic membership on AR allows you to post in draft, associates, and members only modes.  The "RainMaker" accounts on ActiveRain allow you to post publically.

  Is there a cost involved with the Rainmaker accounts and what are some of the other benefits? 

  Yes, there is a cost.  If you are a new member on AR after 2/16/2009, RainMaker membership is 29.00 per month but it also includes your outside ActiveBlog, your domain name, registration, Localism posting, SEO, technical support, webinar training (coming shortly) and more.  Current founding members pay 19.00 for their outside ActiveBlogs.

  I need to change my email address on my account to and I can't find the area where I can do this.  On my profile, that part of the page is grayed out.  Can you help me with this?

  This is a feature that needs to be changed by our admin or staff, feel free to email any of the community builders or technical support at support@activerain.com and we will take care of it for you.  Be sure to send a link to your profile and what you'd like the new email address to be.

  Can I add google analytics to my AR or outside blog?

  Not currently, we are working on adding a tool that will allow you to add this shortly.  There are a few other widgets you can add to get stats from your AR internal blog, the outside blogs are still in development.

  I have a curious question.  Why are we not able to mark for comments to be sent to us on those post we respond to?  My in box seems awful lonely.

  The "Notify Me Of Comments" has been moved from the comments section of posts.  It is now located at the base of each post.  You no longer need to leave a comment to follow a thread or be notified by email.

  How do I get my picture to show up when I leave a comment on another members post?  I see photos on some of the comments, but not on others?  Can you explain?

  Member photos appear next to their comments when 1. They use one of the paid services like Listing Router, Sponsor a Community in Localism, or have an outside ActiveBlog or  2. When a member obtains 10,000 AR points.

  How do I get one of those cool badges other members have under their photos?

  There are two types of badges.  The first are the earned badges.  These are awarded based on points, (100k, 200k, 300k, etc) feature posts, and the new Ambassador Badge which we'll announce this next week.  The second types of badges represent the services used like Listing Router, Localism sponsorship, and Outside ActiveBlogs.  We will also be adding an opt-in / opt-out feature for members.

  Just one question about my outside blog. I have my OB up and running, but I only want to add specific content to it, and ALL my AR posts from the last year are on it. The reason is: My OB is going to be about Neighborhoods and cheap eats and great places to buy food and things to do and photos of locals etc. How do I control what goes on it?

  By default, all your posts (excluding members only) are automatically added when you create your outside blog. This is by design.  All posts for Outside ActiveBlogs are created on your ActiveRain Blog.  Before submitting your post to the public, put a check in the box that says "Individual Blog" and if you don't want the post to show up on your outside Blog, just uncheck the box. 

  How come other outside Blogs have Categories listed on the sidebar and mine are all blank?

  This is a great question. Many members are creating posts on AR and not using the "Topic & Channels" located in the edit mode of any Blog post.  ActiveBlogs use these topics to sort out the categories you see appearing on the outside Blogs sidebar.  Be sure you are adding a topic to ALL your AR posts, whether you have an outside blog or not.

  I want to start my outside Blog but I don't have a domain name yet.  Do I have to go to GoDaddy and buy my domain name first or should I start my outside Blog first?

  ActiveRain provides you with a domain name when you setup your Outside ActiveBlogs.  It's included in the price of the upgrade.  You create the outside Blog first on AR (or upgrade) then when the internal domain is setup, you can go into the toolbar and search for and claim available domain names.  It only takes about 2 minutes, and you don't have to direct any DNS nameservers.  Your new domain will come up instantly. Here's 5 tips to remember.


I'd like to keep a series of these FAQ's going for our members if there is enough interest.  Most of you probably know these things already so if you do, please pay it forward and help out another member.  These FAQ's will be located in the HELP/FAQ link at the bottom of every AR page. 

Have a great week, thanks for taking the time to review these.  ActiveRainGuide.com / ActiveRainTeam.com

Week In Review - Top 10 ActiveRain FAQ's - Volume I
Week In Review - Top 10 ActiveRain FAQ's - Volume II
Week In Review - Top 10 ActiveRain FAQ's - Volume III
    
Week In Review - Top 10 ActiveRain FAQ's - Volume IV

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Show All Comments
Rainer
1,312
Anthony Cheff
Century 21 Crest Real Estate - Jefferson Township, NJ

Thanks Brad, I had to do a little searching, but my questions have been answered.

March 07, 2009 07:47 PM #120
Rainmaker
173,903
Maya Thomas LLC, Broker
Key West, Key Haven, Geiger, Sugarloaf, Cudjoe, Summerland - Key West, FL
Key West FL Historic Old Town Estates, Bungalows

Where does our outside blog go if we haven't paid our $19 yet?  Do we still have the name we initially set up or do we start over?  I thought I looked at my outside blog last week...

March 11, 2009 12:34 PM #121
Ambassador
710,254
Brad Andersohn
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876

Maya - you still have your outside blog and domain name, but to get the full advantage of the rainmaker ActiveBlogs, you'd need to upgrade or start a new one.  Either choice is fine.  :-)

March 11, 2009 01:21 PM #122
Rainmaker
84,067
Simon Mills
Mills Realty - Toluca Lake, CA

Brad - Thanks for the personal call yesterday.   These helpful tips will go a long way to answering some questions that I (and I'm sure many others) have.  I'm going to be setting up my outside blog in a few days just a little swamped right now, but I can't complain about that!

March 12, 2009 07:26 PM #123
Ambassador
710,254
Brad Andersohn
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876

Simon - great talking to you too.  I'm Here to help you if and when you need it.  Looking forward to seeing your new outside blog.

March 12, 2009 07:41 PM #124
Anonymous
Anonymous
Anonymous

Brad,

Thanks for posting the FAQ's. 

March 12, 2009 07:43 PM #125
Ambassador
866,946
Dagny Eason
Dagny's Real Estate - Wilton, CT
Fairfield County CT, CDPE Homes For Sale and Condo

You are always a fabulous resource!  I wish I could find the time to really sit down, and figure all of this out!

Thanks as always,

Dagny

March 12, 2009 08:31 PM #126
Rainmaker
663,774
Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging
Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR - Portland, OR
"Staging that Sells Portland Homes"

Brad ~ I hope you'll continue with more FAQs like this one, it's very helpful!  Even though I knew a few of these things already, I really like reading them all.  Thanks for your continued help and support!

March 12, 2009 08:37 PM #127
Rainmaker
555,272
Wayne Johnson
Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS® - San Antonio, TX
San Antonio REALTOR, San Antonio Homes For Sale

I did not know most of the points you raised. Keep it up, I can use this information.

March 12, 2009 09:34 PM #128
Ambassador
710,254
Brad Andersohn
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876

Dagny - spend an hour on my profile page and you'll know everything I know.  :-))

Maureen - I will try to keep these going each week or until members or I run out of questions.  At some point I would like to create a single library for all these.  Maybe one day...  

Wayne - there is a lot to learn, hopefully this makes the curve a bit less windy.

March 13, 2009 12:11 AM #129
Ambassador
498,595
Stanton Homes
Stanton Homes - Our family designs and builds custom homes for your family - Raleigh, NC
Design/Build Custom Home Builder in North Carolina

Great overview.  I too had to figure some of this out, especially the topics for outside blogs!  The "communities" or "areas" guide for outside blogs is great too, but we need to get the mapping fixed to add new communities, I haven't been able to add the last dozen or so that I've profiled.

March 13, 2009 05:49 AM #130
Rainer
11,400
Elizabeth Martin-Ann
Edward Surovell Realtors - Ann Arbor, MI
Arbor, Michigan Realtor, ABR

Thanks so much for these, Brad!  They were great tips!

March 13, 2009 09:37 AM #131
Rainer
286,997
Diane Aurit
LKN Realty, LLC - Mooresville, NC
Lake Norman Real Estate

Brad, What a great way to let all members of AR get better informed about these kinds of questions.  Since I am a old member (in more ways than one:) I do get questions from Newbies and don't know of the differences these days.  This was helpful!

March 13, 2009 11:00 AM #132
Ambassador
710,254
Brad Andersohn
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876

Penny - it does work in Firefox Browser, but not in Internet Explorer.  It's on our list of items to fix in the next releases.  Thanks.

Elizabeth - thank you.

Diane - glad this was helpful for you.  I have emailed this to so many people along with the other FAQ, it is saving us all some time and effort.  I'm glad these are working out for some of our folks who find them.

March 13, 2009 02:53 PM #133
Rainer
9,478
Nancy Ruben
An Assistant On Call - North Augusta, SC
REVA, CRESS

THANKS! I was going NUTS trying to figure out why my picture did not show up with my comments any more and I could not find an answer.

You saved me from being up all night!

Thanks

March 15, 2009 07:44 PM #134
Rainer
41,639
Jackie DeShazer
Montana Country Real Estate - Libby, MT

Brad,

Thank you so much I was also trying to figure out why my picture would not show up on my comments, and I was able to get alot of other information out of your blog. Keep up the good work!

March 16, 2009 01:01 PM #135
Rainer
73,568
Lynn Boyd
The Payne Group - Keller Williams Success Realty - Panama City Beach, FL
Realtor - Your Panama City Florida RE Specialist

Brad,

Thank you for taking the time to post FAQ's. I'm a newbie and this answers a lot of my questions. Now I'm off to check out your other posts!

March 29, 2009 02:56 PM #136
Rainer
73,568
Lynn Boyd
The Payne Group - Keller Williams Success Realty - Panama City Beach, FL
Realtor - Your Panama City Florida RE Specialist

Brad,

Thank you for taking the time to post FAQ's. I'm a newbie and this answers a lot of my questions. Now I'm off to check out your other posts!

March 29, 2009 02:56 PM #137
Rainer
6,519
Shannon Martin
Cindy Karp Realty, Inc. - Athens, GA

Thank you Brad, I found this very helpful.  As a "newbie" I'll be referring back often I think.

April 12, 2010 10:11 PM #138
Ambassador
710,254
Brad Andersohn
Zillow - Nat'l Outreach Mgr & Dir. of Zillow Academy - Fairfield, CA
ActiveBrad 707.646.1876

Hi Shannon - keep reading posts like this and you won't be a "newbie" for long!!  (BIG SMILE!!)  :-)

April 13, 2010 12:49 PM #139
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Ambassador
710,254

Brad Andersohn

ActiveBrad 707.646.1876
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